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Rousseau, Judge of Jean-Jacques: Dialogues


Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Publication Year: 2001

One of Rousseau's later and most puzzling works and never before available in English, this neglected autobiographical piece was the product of the philosopher's old age and sense of persecution. Long viewed simply as evidence of his growing paranoia, it consists of three dialogues between a character named "Rousseau" and one identified only as "Frenchman" who discuss the bad reputation and works of an author named "Jean-Jacques." Dialogues offers a fascinating retrospective of his literary career.

Published by: Dartmouth College Press

Series: Collected Writings of Rousseau


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pp. 2-3


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p. 4-4


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p. 5-5


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pp. v-vi

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pp. vii-viii

Although Jean-Jacques Rousseau is a significant figure in the Western tradition, there is no standard edition of his major writings available in English. Unlike those of other thinkers of comparable stature, moreover,many of Rousseau's important works either have never been translated or have become unavailable. ...

Chronology of Rousseau's Life

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pp. ix-xii

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pp. xiii-xxviii

Most students of Rousseau's political thought have tended to ignore his autobiographical writings, or at most to cite passages in which he explains the circumstances in which his obviously theoretical works were written. Those who make greater use of the autobiographical works usually do so in order to interpret Rousseau's thought in the light of his personality. ...

Note on the Text and Its Title

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pp. xxix-xxxii

Rousseau, Judge of Jean-Jacques

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pp. 1-2

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On the Subject and Form of This Writing

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pp. 3-7

I have often said that if someone had given me ideas about another man like those my contemporaries have been given about me, I would not have behaved toward him as they do toward me. This assertion has left everyone utterly indifferent, and I have not seen in anyone the least curiosity about how my behavior would have differed from that of others, ..

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First Dialogue

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pp. 8-86

What incredible things I have just learned! I can't get over it. No, I will never get over it. Just heaven, what an abominable man! How he has hurt me! How I am going to detest him! ...

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Second Dialogue

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pp. 87-198

Let us go in turn, I beg you, and allow us to start with you who were the most eager. I have given you plenty of time to study our man well. I know that you have seen him for yourself, and at your leisure. Therefore you are now prepared to judge him or you never will be. ...

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Third Dialogue

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pp. 199-245

I've read them, not enough yet to understand them well, but enough to have found, enumerated, collected the irremediable crimes that couldn't have failed to make their Author the most odious of monsters and the horror of the human race. ...

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History of the Preceding Writing

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pp. 246-258

I will not speak about the subject, object, or form of this Writing here. I did so in the introduction that precedes it. But I will say what it was intended for, what its destiny was, and why this copy is found here. ...


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pp. 259-270


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pp. 271-278

E-ISBN-13: 9781611680744
E-ISBN-10: 1611680743
Print-ISBN-13: 9780874514957

Page Count: 312
Publication Year: 2001

Edition: Trans. from the French
Series Title: Collected Writings of Rousseau